It’s no secret that a lot of people nowadays have too few green veggies in their diets. Moreover, in this fast-paced world, some of us prefer take-outs and eating out because of the little time for cooking.
Enter greens powders.
Greens powders are dietary supplements designed to make up for the lack of green veggies in our diets. Some greens even claim that their formula can elevate your energy levels for the day, detoxify your body, and even help you with muscle building.
However, this sounds too good to be true, and you might start wondering if the science behind green powders backs up their claims. This article will not try to tell you if greens are worth it, but we will tell you what all the rage is all about and let you find out for yourself if it’s worth considering or not. But first, what are greens powders?
What are Greens Powders?
Greens powders are dietary supplements that consist of powdered vegetables, fruits, and other plant-based compounds to help you take in more vitamins and minerals in your diet. Some brands even boast of adding more compounds that can help you with your workout or be active throughout the day.
All you have to do is mix in a scoop of greens powder with a few ounces of water, protein shake, or even milk.
With all that in mind, how are greens powders made?
How Greens Powders are Made
One of the most common techniques of making greens is to dry the raw ingredients and grind them. You could buy one for convenience, but if you didn’t know, you could make your own greens.
Some manufacturers juice the veggies and fruits before grinding them. If you’re wondering how to dry your ingredients, there are three common techniques, namely: air drying, freeze-drying, and spray drying.
We can delve into their technicalities in another day, but the most popular technique is freeze-drying your ingredients. Freeze-drying uses low temperature, which is better in preserving the nutrients in your ingredients, but they are also the most expensive method.
Air drying is the opposite in which you use high temperatures to dry your ingredients, but they tend to destroy some of the nutrients. That said, if you’re looking for a brand for greens powders, use one that uses the freeze-drying technique. You can see them on the label.
Here are the advantages of including greens in your diet:
Healthy Blood Pressure
Minerals found in greens powders like potassium and calcium are associated with reduced blood pressure. In a clinical study, people who take one serving of greens powder daily have significantly decreased their diastolic and systolic blood pressure.
Chronic Disease Prevention
Since vegetables are known to detoxify your body and since the greens powder is made from veggies, it’s no question that greens powders would also have a detoxifying nature. In addition, greens have vitamins C and K, which are potent antioxidants that fight free radicals.
Free radicals cause oxidation, which is linked to chronic diseases like diabetes and heart disease. One study has found that a serving of greens powder daily can reduce the risks of chronic diseases by up to 30%.
Enhanced Immune System
The best greens powders contain high levels of vitamins and minerals that are needed to have a great immune system. For example, with vitamin A, which has inflammatory properties, your body will have a more efficient immune system. And with selenium, your body will be better at fighting infections.
Here are the disadvantages of including greens in your diet:
Some brands include other chemicals in their formulas, and if you’re currently taking medications right now, it’s probably best if you ask your doctor if it’s okay for you to take greens.
For example, Vitamin K interacts with certain medications like antibiotics, weight-loss drugs, and high cholesterol meds. This is especially true with blood thinners. That said, if you’re taking any medications, you should be careful about taking greens powders or, better yet, consult your doctor first.
Lab tests have shown that some brands contain some heavy metals. While we need heavy metals in our bodies to keep them healthy, they can be dangerous in high amounts. They can be toxic to us and will damage the functions of some of our important organs like the heart and liver.
Some brands added several chemicals in their formulas to make them more efficient and have added effects. Of course, that isn’t unsafe and all, but if you have allergies, you better check their ingredients to see if you’re allergic to some of them.
Greens powders, in general, are good for our health. Of course, it has its pros and cons, but if you are careful in picking up a brand, then you’re all good. Also, if you have a condition or are taking any medications, you better consult your doctor first.
Chris is an experienced Calisthenics practitioner focused on isometric exercises and street workout. He founded thehybridathlete.com in 2017, which was subsequently acquired by theyhybridathlete.com
He is based in Portland and has been working out using solely his own body weight and bars for the past 6 years.